Buehrle's contract with Marlins carries risk

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Buehrle's contract with Marlins carries risk

In agreeing to a four-year, 58 million contract with Mark Buehrle, Miami added a durable, dependable arm to their starting rotation. That's the positive side. The negative side is they're paying 14.5 million to a high-contact pitcher who will be 37 in the final year of the deal.

Over the course of his four-year, 56 million deal with the White Sox that expired after last season, Buehrle was worth 66.5 million to the White Sox -- a surplus value of 10.5 million. Most of that surplus value came in 2008, which ranks among the best seasons of Buehrle's career. From 2009-2011, he was worth 1-1.5 million more than his salary per season.

Buehrle's durability over the last dozen years is well-known, as he hasn't failed to throw fewer than 201 innings in any season since joining the White Sox starting rotation in 2001. But as Buehrle enters his mid and late 30's, can Miami expect the same kind of durability?

Generally, the answer to that question would be no. But Buehrle isn't your average pitcher -- heck, his fastball is still the same speed as it was when he was 27. He's gone through his prime with an 86 mph fastball, so why can't it continue into his late 30's?

But no matter the player, as he gets older injuries become more likely. A lot of Buehrle's value is predicated on him throwing 200 innings, and if he loses five or six starts to an injury, that's enough to take his value below his salary.

That's why this move is risky for Miami. It helps that Ozzie Guillen has managed Buehrle since 2004 and knows how to manage his innings load to keep him as fresh as possible. But one freak injury and suddenly, Miami is saddled with overpaying Buehrle for a year.

Miami can -- apparently -- afford to shoulder that monetary risk, though. The White Sox could, too, but as they transition to a younger roster, there are better ways for Kenny Williams & Co. to spend 58 million.

Sentimentally, keeping Buehrle would've been great. And performance-wise, he'd probably still be successful with the Sox. But that's a lot of money to spend on someone of Buehrle's age, and the Sox shouldn't be criticized for not matching the contract offer.

Maybe this is nothing more than an effort to soften the blow of losing Buehrle -- who, for the record, has been my favorite player since I was 12 -- by saying "well, he wouldn't have been worth it." Chances are, Buehrle will be worth the contract he signed with Florida. But it's less of a slam dunk than the last four-year, 50 million Buehrle signed.

What are your thoughts on losing Buehrle? Does his contract make it easier to understand? Or would you still give anything to have him pitch for the Sox? Let us know in the comments or on twitter @WhiteSoxTalkCSN.

Discomfort sidelines White Sox infielder Brett Lawrie

Discomfort sidelines White Sox infielder Brett Lawrie

GLENDALE, Ariz. — The White Sox held Brett Lawrie out Saturday after he reported discomfort in the same left leg that sidelined him for the final 2 1/2 months of 2016.

The second baseman has been a full participant the entire spring until he informed manager Rick Renteria what he was experiencing Saturday. 

"We're going to reevaluate him tomorrow and see where he's at," Renteria said. "He didn't feel quite right, and so he was in there earlier today getting treatment. We'll reevaluate tomorrow and make a determination where we're at in terms of trying to set some parameters for how we move forward."

A confusing, tricky series of injuries that Lawrie blamed on wearing orthotics limited him to 94 games last season. He hit the disabled list on July 22 and didn't discover the cause until after the season ended. But Lawrie reported to camp feeling healthy once again and has participated at 100 percent until this point, Renteria said.

"It's been good," Renteria said. "Everything has been clean. There have been no notifications anything had been amiss. He just woke up this morning and felt it. So we're going to be very cautious, take it a day at a time, reevaluate it and see where we're at."

Zack Collins, Yoan Moncada play as White Sox fall to Dodgers

Zack Collins, Yoan Moncada play as White Sox fall to Dodgers

GLENDALE, Ariz. — Manager Rick Renteria promised before Saturday's game the prospects would play and they certainly did.

White Sox prospects Zack Collins and Yoan Moncada both entered in the fifth inning of Saturday's 5-3 loss to the Los Angeles Dodgers at Camelback Ranch. Collins singled in two at-bats while Moncada, the centerpiece in the Chris Sale trade, went 0-for-2.

"It was fun," Collins said. "To be able to go out there on the first day was an honor to me. A little jittery, but very excited to play.

"I'm the new guy, it's my first year and the first game played and I get to play. It's definitely an honor."

It's a distinction that will be shared by many, Renteria said. With the White Sox focused on player development and a longer spring schedule, the prospects should get a long look. Given the club's top eight prospects — according to MLB.com — are in big league camp, many will see significant playing time early in camp.

"We've got a long spring and a lot of opportunities," Renteria said. "You're going to see a lot of our kids."

Reliever Zack Burdi, the 26th overall pick of last June's draft, is scheduled to appear in Sunday's game when the White Sox host the Rockies. The White Sox also tentatively have listed Michael Kopech and Reynaldo Lopez as the starting pitchers for their split-squad doubleheader on Tuesday. 

Collins took advantage of his first chance with a ninth-inning single off Dodgers pitcher Edward Paredes. Next up for the 2016 first-rounder is a report Monday for his teammates as part of Renteria's morning meetings.

"I have my little presentation going," Collins said. "I'll probably be more nervous than I will playing."